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Minimum Wage: Fines

Question for Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy

UIN HL3909, tabled on 9 November 2021

To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to increase financial penalties for employers violating the minimum wage law.

Answered on

22 November 2021

This Government takes the enforcement of the minimum wage seriously. That’s why we have doubled HMRC’s budget for enforcing the minimum wage since 2015.

In April 2016 we doubled the minimum wage penalty paid by employers; from 100% to 200% of the arrears owed to the worker, up to a maximum of £20,000 per worker. Any employer found to have underpaid their workers is subject to this substantial penalty and also to be publicly named and shamed. This is a significant deterrent against any employer who may be tempted to underpay their workers.

Our priority has always been to ensure that workers receive the money they are owed as quickly as possible. It is for this reason, in the vast majority of cases, HMRC pursue civil enforcement, and why since 2015 the Government has been able to order employers to repay £100 million to 1 million workers.